A Nottingham suburb has seen shoplifting reach its highest total in almost a decade despite an overall reduction in crime.

71 shoplifting offences were reported in Bilborough last year which is 28 more than in 2019 according to latest data from the UK Crime Stats website.

April, July and November saw 11 shoplifting offences – the most within a single month in that area since statistics were made available in September 2011.

The highest previous total was 56 in 2018 with 2014 reporting the fewest number of offences at just 16.

Inspector Gordon Fenwick of Nottinghamshire Police explained the increase at the Aspley, Bilborough and Leen Valley committee meeting.

He said: “It’s mainly on Bracebridge Drive.

“It’s being targeted and we’re doing operations around there especially at the Co-op to try and get on top of it.”

A Co-op spokesperson said: “Retail crime affects all retailers, and this week senior retail leaders wrote to the Prime Minister to further raise concerns about the increasing problem of violence and abuse being experienced by hundreds of thousands of frontline shopworkers across the industry.

“This has been a growing trend for some time and in March last year, the annual BRC Crime Survey reported that over 400 incidents of violence or abuse were occurring daily.

“Major triggers for these incidents included challenging customers for ID when purchasing age-restricted items or encountering shoplifters.

“The Co-op has invested £70 million in the latest technology – this includes the latest in CCTV, smart water fog cannons and body-worn cameras – which send real time audio and visual footage to a security operation centre at the touch of a button in the event of an instore incident.

“The images have been used to secure convictions, and this year will see Co-op more than double the number of its stores with body-worn cameras in place.”

Chris Miles, 64, is the manager of Bitza Allsorts on Bracebridge Drive but hasn’t recently been affected by shoplifting.

He said: “It did happen to us about four years ago.

“They were usually a group of males between 25 and 30 who were connected but it stopped when we had cameras and a TV screen fitted – that seems to put people off.

“I didn’t realise it was so bad to be honest.”

 

Bitza Allsorts have not been impacted by the recent rise in shoplifting. (Credit: Bitza Allsorts)

Hate crime has also risen with 21 more reported incidents compared to the same period last year.

Inspector Fenwick revealed that the increase is due to a small number of individuals.

He said: “It relates to two addresses who are very close to each other but are not connected.

“We are working with the residents of both addresses.”

It’s not all bad news though as Nottinghamshire Police reported 124 fewer overall crimes in Bilborough over the past year.